Re-calculation of the attenuation functions for Local Magnitude from the upgraded Central Weather Bureau Seismic network in Taiwan

  • New attenuation functions for local magnitude (ML) in Taiwan
  • New attenuation functions obtained from CWBSN24
  • The new ML has a better relationship with Mw than the old ML

The empirical attenuation functions for Local Magnitude (ML) currently used in Taiwan have been known for overestimated magnitudes around 0.2 compared with moment magnitude (MW) for shallow earthquakes (depths ≤ 35km). Moreover, for deep earthquakes (depths > 35km), ML (> 6) can be larger than MW around 0.5. Based on global observations and seismological theory, ML is equal to MW for magnitudes 4 - 6, whereas ML is smaller than MW for magnitudes > 6. This indicates that the attenuation functions for the Taiwan region need to be re-calculated. In this study, we used the new data set collected at the upgraded Central Weather Bureau seismic network (CWBSN24) from January 2012 to April 2019 and totally there are 692 events with ML ≥ 3 and 35228 amplitude data used for analysis. To accommodate the complicated tectonic environment in Taiwan, there are four attenuation functions, logA0(Δ), based on the focal depths and hypocentral distances, which are:

2020061601T Eq1

for shallow earthquakes (focal depth, h ≤ 35 km), and

2020061601T Eq2

for deep earthquakes (h > 35 km)

where Δ is epicentral distances, R (= 2020061601T Eq3) is hypocentral distance. ML calculated by using the old attenuation functions for deep and large (ML > 5.5) earthquakes is larger than that by using the new ones above 0.4. With the new empirical attenuation functions, the relationship between ML and MW follows the global observations and also the new ML avoids the confusion for the publics when releasing the official earthquake reports.

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